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Webmatters : Ferme Olivier Cemetery, Elverdinge

Ferme-Olivier Cemetery

Location

Ferme-Olivier Cemetery is located seven kilometres north west of Ieper town centre on the Steentjesmolenstraat, N333, a road leading from the N8 Veurnseweg connecting Ieper to Elverdinge and on to Veurne.

On reaching the village of Elverdinge the Steentjesmolenstraat, N333, is the second left hand turning. The cemetery lies 1.3 kilometres along the Steentjesmolenstraat on the left hand side of the road.

GPS N E Wikimapia
Decimal 50.885424 2.798896 Map

Ferme-Olivier Cemetery

 

Historical Information

The cemetery was used continuously between 9th June 1915 and 5th August 1917, with the 62nd, 16th, 9th, 11th, 129th and 130th Field Ambulances successively having dressing stations close by.

Throughout this period, the village was just within range of the German artillery and a collective grave in Plot 2, Row E, contains the remains of 37 men of the 3rd Bn Monmouthshire Regiment killed on parade on 29th December 1915 by a single shell fired from a naval gun in Houthulst Forest.

Ferme-Olivier Cemetery

The graves in Plot 3 are in order of date of death and show the successive occupations of Elverdinge Ch√Ęteau by the 38th (Welsh) Division, the Guards Division and units of the Royal Artillery.

The cemetery contains 408 Commonwealth burials of the First World War, six of which are unidentified, and three German war graves.

The cemetery was designed by Sir Reginald Blomfield.

Graves of the Monmouthshire Regiment

Graves of the Monmouthshire Regiment

 


Lieutenant Colonel George Gregor

Lieutenant Colonel George Gregor
1st Welsh Howitzer Brigade
Royal Field Artillery
Died on 1st july 1917 aged 47
Son of Joseph and Susan Gregor
of Swansea

Grave: III G 20


Rifleman Leonard Streatfield

Rifleman Leonard Streatfield 12340
9th Bn King’s Royal Rifle Corps
Died on 6th January 1916 aged 16
Son of W and R Streatfield
of 6, High Path, Merton, Surrey

Grave: II I 4


Private William Price

Private William Price 1855
3rd Bn Monmouthshire Regiment
Died on 29th December 1915 aged 19
Son of James and Ann Price
of 65, Harcourt Street, Ebbw Vale
Monmouthshire

Grave: II E 2

Yr hyn a ofnais
A ddaeth Arnaf

What I feared
Has come upon me
Job 3:25


Private Harry Price

Private Harry Price 31963
113th Company Machine Gun Corps
Died on 14th October 1916 aged 16
Son of Harry and Margaret Price
of 7, Anvil Street, Blackburn, Lancashire

Grave: I A 5

 

Shot at Dawn


Private George Watkins

Private George Watkins 8139
13th Bn Welsh Regiment
Died on 15th May 1917 aged 31

Grave: III C 12

Shot at Dawn for desertion

Watkins had been a professional soldier before the war and had been recalled as an active reservist. He arrived in France with the 2nd Bn Welsh Regiment in August 1914 and took part in the Battle of Mons. Wounded twice in 1915 he always returned to his unit.

He was eventually transferred to the 13th Battalion and served on the Somme and in Flanders, where in December 1916 he went missing whilst his unit was resting behind the lines. He managed to allude the authorities for three months and it was almost certainly this long period of absence that influenced the decision of the Court Martial over and above his previously good record.


Private Robert Hope

Private Robert Hope 23726
1st Bn Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers
Died on 5th July 1917 aged 23
Served as James Hepple
Husband of Mrs. Hope
of 9, Moehans Row, Waterside, Londonderry

Grave: III G 12

Shot at Dawn for desertion

For whatever reason Robert Hope served his time (and was executed as) James Hepple.

He had served with his regiment for a short time at Gallipoli before they were moved back to France with the remainder of 29th Division.

On the 21st January 1917 whilst resting in the trenches near Carnoy on the Somme the battalion received orders to return to the front line. Although Hope started the journey forward, he was missing by the time that it arrived. He remained absent for the next three and a bit months, living in Albert (of all places, a British garrison) only a few kilometres from where he had gone missing. On being found sleeping in a derelict house by British Military Police he stated that he was on his way back to rejoin his unit at Bapaume.

The Policeman became suspicious and arrested him and Hope was returned to his unit — in Flanders where he was tried and shot for desertion.

An interesting aside is that the officer detailed to carry out the execution, refused on the grounds that he knew the soldier and his family. Captain Alan Lendrum would himself be courtmartialed and reduced in rank for his refusal. He would be reinstated and later awarded the Military Cross. After the war he was made a Magistrate in his native Ireland and was assassinated by the IRA on 22nd September 1920.

 

Other cemeteries in the area


Recent Additions

Canadian Cemetery No.2

Givenchy Road Canadian Cemetery

Petit Vimy British Cemetery

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